According to researchers, 10% of people are affected by dry mouth. Dry mouth isn’t just uncomfortable, it also has a significant impact on oral health. For our patients with dentures, this is a major concern that can affect the health of their gums and the fit of their dentures. Unfortunately, this can be a relatively common problem for many denture wearers. So, what causes dry mouth and how do we combat this issue? The solution for dry mouth can vary depending on each patient’s oral health history and specific cause of dry mouth. To explain this topic more, Dr. Eugene Stanislaus shares the most common causes of dry mouth and how to resolve this problem for his patients here in Brooklyn, NY.
Causes of Dry Mouth
We all experience dry mouth every once in awhile, but it becomes particularly dangerous when your mouth is chronically dry. Dry mouth, which is also known as xerostomia, is characterized by a lack of saliva in the mouth. Saliva is important because it helps with eating, speaking, and digesting food. Some of the causes of dry mouth include:
Side Effect of Medications: Studies suggest that there are approximately 400 medications that have been confirmed to cause dry mouth as a side effect. This can include various types of medications such as antidepressants, antihypertensives, diuretics, decongestants, allergy medications, and muscle relaxants. This can include both prescription and over-the-counter medications.
Dehydrating Beverages: Not all beverages will hydrate you. In fact, there are several beverages that act as a diuretic and will actually end up dehydrating you. Alcohol is the most notable dehydrating beverage because oxygen and saliva flow in the mouth is significantly decreased. Coffee and other caffeine-packed beverages are also known to dry out the mouth.
Diabetes: Unstable blood glucose levels from diabetes can also have a negative impact on the salivary glands. Salivary glands aren’t able to produce an adequate amount of saliva for a healthy mouth.
Tobacco Use: Saliva reduction due to tobacco use has been tied to other oral health problems like gingivitis and halitosis. Studies have found that long-term smoking, in particular, will result in salivary flow reduction.
How Will Dry Mouth Affect Dentures?
Saliva is important for everyone’s oral health, but it is especially important for denture wearers for a few different reasons. Saliva is important for patients wearing dentures because:
- Helps Create Comfort: Saliva is important for the lubrication it provides for denture wearers. Without enough saliva, patients can end up dealing with irritation and abrasion to the gum tissue.
- Helps Create Suction: Saliva is important for a denture wearer because it helps to create a suction between the denture base and the gum tissue where the denture sits.
Contact our Office in Brooklyn
If you suffer from dry mouth, you should speak with a dental professional before getting your dentures. Of course, we’re here for all of your dental needs and questions regarding dentures. If you’re in need of an affordable solution for your tooth loss, contact our office today! You can be one step closer to a complete smile after scheduling your no-obligation consultation with Dr. Stanislaus.